Waste not, want not

This is the time of year I miss the expanse of a rolling yard, a garden before the first frost, and sap turned still. The zoo provides some nice autumn days with changing trees and new energy with the cooler temperatures, and yet. Here’s the view at dusk from my urban balcony onto the back alley. A few too many wires and windows for my taste.

Today, my friend Lee and I took a giant bag of tree fallen apples that a friend brought back from his mother’s yard in Michigan and we turned it into applesauce. As you can see, they weren’t exactly gems but we peeled and trimmed our way around the worm holes, added orange and lemon juice and zest, a bit of brown sugar and some allspice, cinnamon and a few red hots and voila! Ten pints of delicious (Delicious) sweetness set aside for winter pork roasts.

While waiting for the apples to simmer down I used the last of the last tomatoes and peppers to make hot sauce and salsa. Dan likes the red, with a long chipotle burn but this year he’ll get to try something new: datil pepper and green tomato salsa. The datil pepper seeds came from my good friend, FC, and the tomatoes had to be picked from the earth boxes before this weekend, when we’re expecting a serious frost. This salsa is incredible. Lee and I kept eating it while we were peeling apples. Tangy and piquant with very nice heat.

Back in Michigan I put up well over a hundred jars of fruits and vegetables in all variations to take us through the winter so this looks like meager fare. I’m anxious for the time when I will again have a big producing garden. Nevertheless, this afternoon’s work felt rewarding. The reason I was in a rush to harvest and can today, besides the impending frost, is that I’m heading out of town for the weekend.

My sweetie is whisking me away for my birthday to the new house in Asheville. It’s not yet rented so we’re going to camp out for the weekend. We’ll use sleeping bags and folding chairs and build a nice cozy fire at night. During the day we’ll continue the process of getting acquainted with our new and future turf. The next photo you see here of an autumn dusk will look quite different!

Here’s hoping you all have a great weekend!

16 responses to “Waste not, want not

  1. Beautiful jars of applesauce there. Happy birthday. Enjoy North Carolina in your new home there.

    Go Rays! At least they’re leading right now in game 2.

  2. I’m as impressed as hell at your canning. I am thoroughly intimidated by the very idea of canning. I bow down before your kitchen superiority.

    Have a great time in Asheville. It sounds romantic!!

  3. I’ll be waving to you this weekend!

  4. I think jars of home-canned foods look like jewels!

    You can garden in my back yard. Come on down. All we planted this year were tomatoes, peppers, and pumpkins.

    I’ve missed you SO MUCH!

  5. Happy Birthday to you! Have a wonderful time in NC. Can’t wait to see some pictures.

    Lee has lovely posture. Is she a yoga friend?

  6. Don’t you love that datil flavor? It’s not just about the heat with a datil.
    It just makes me all a twitter to hear of someone up nawth using datils.
    Your weekend sounds like a very fun one.


  8. Happy Birthday! Have a wonderful weekend!

  9. Any effort of canning brings admiration from me. One of these days, I’ll be able to scratch that off my to-learn list.

    Safe travels and a very happy birthday to you!

  10. Safe travels and happy birthday to you.

  11. You make me want to sign up for home ec or something, chica!

  12. I’ve done relatively little canning this year, which makes me sad. However, today I brought home from the market acase of amazing bosc pears that are just waiting to become… gingered pear preserves? vanilla pear butter? pear sauce with chocolate? I’ll let you know.

    Belated happy birthday, Vicki. I hope it was wonderful.

  13. All well and good, but can you help your Wolverines turn lemons into lemonade?

    Happy Birthday!

  14. More pictures of Ashville home and area, please kindly.

  15. What? No recipe for the salsa? Sigh.

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